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wFavorite posts
halloween 2002 roundup
the future of online gaming
star wars cereal review
japanese culture link of the day (12/6/2002)
japanese culture link of the day (12/23/2002)
reviews: hentai games sux0rz
anime term of the day (fan service, 02/17/2003)
retro gaming link of the day (battletech)
 

Recommended:
megatokyo
sinfest
8-bit theatre
mac hall
penny arcade
twisted kaiju theater
this modern world
dilbert
destroy all monsters
giant robot
8bit joystick
retrolounge
teleport city
stomp tokyo
anime web turnpike
radio paradise
neil gaiman
william gibson
greg costikyan
techrepublic
u.s. constitution
indiana democratic party
tompaine.com
fark
boing boing
metafilter
kuro5hin
the hoosier review
spinsanity
the daily howler
this modern world
the joe bob report
gamespot
quake 2
 

Blogs:
nextblog (random)
blogdex
daypop
the truth laid bear
technorati
the lefty directory

#!-usr-bin-girl
alas, a blog
andrew hagen
angry bear
annatopia
asymmetrical information
bertrand russel
blog left
blog of the moderate left
blue streak
body and soul
bookslut
brut4c
busy, busy, busy
byzantium's shores
calpundit
charles murtaugh
cogent provocateur
confessions of a g33k
cooped up
corrente
counterspin central
crooked timber
cut on the bias
daily kos
democratic veteran
destroy all blogs
die puny humans
disgustedliberal
d-squared digest
electrolite
eschaton
exploits and musings of heidi
flit
founding issues
geisha asobi blog
gorilla-a-go-go
how appealing
hullabaloo
insanekungfu
intel dump
interesting times
ipse dixit
it's still the economy, stupid
kieran healy
late night thoughts
lillianchan
long story, short pier
making light
mark byron
mark a. r. kleiman
matt welch
matthew yglesias
meryl yourish
min jung kim
modulator
mydd
nathan newman
never trust a monkey
no more mister nice blog
notes on the atrocities
not geniuses
oliver willis
oni blogger
onye's livejournal
open source politics
orcinus
pacific views
pandagon
peevish
p.l.a.
political aims
quaker in a basement
reachm high
roger ailes
royal blue
ruminate this
sadly, no!
scoobie davis
seeing the forest
self made pundit
semi-daily journal (brad delong)
shadow of the hegemon
sixdifferentways
skeptical notion
skippy the bush kangaroo
south knox bubba
swanky conservative
tacitus
talking points memo
talkleft
tapped
tbogg
ted barlow
terminus
testify!
the adventures of accordionguy in the 21st century
the agonist
the avocado couch
the blog of chloë and pete
the left coaster
the light of reason
the likely story
the people's republic of seabrook
the power pill
the rittenhouse review
the road to surfdom
the sideshow
the talking dog
the volokh conspiracy
thinking it through
through the looking glass
to the barricades!
to the point
tristero
uggabugga
unmedia
unqualified offerings
untelevised
uss clueless
very big blog
wampumblog
warliberal
whiskey bar
wil wheaton
worldgonewrong
 

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Saturday, May 25, 2002x


the sound of silence


We're attending my friends' Joe and Jennifer's new son Cooper's baby shower, so posting this weekend will be sparse or even nonexistent. I hope to catch up on Memorial Day, but I have a lot of other stuff to catch up with as well (the to-do list on my Palm grows ever longer), so we'll see.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/25/2002 //



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i see episode two


reaction to come

I've said before how lucky I am to have Crystal as my wife. I'm not just lucky because, given the choice between Star Wars and the new Hugh Grant movie, Crstal picked the former, but because given the choice between those two flicks, Star Wars was what she wanted to see.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/25/2002 //



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game companies pander to audience at e3


Today's game technology allows for deigners to model lifelike movement in extreme sports games. Of course, well aware that the audience for games is primarily 18- to 34-year old males, this modeling includes the realistic fluttering of short skirts and, um, accurate wave motion applied to female characters' upper anatomy. And trade shows like the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) are well known for the spandex-clad models that seek to draw attention to certain booths.

Of course, this phenomenon is nothing new. Among the secrets in Soul Edge are codes that allow you to change not only the characters' outfits but the color of the panties some female characters wear. And of course there's Tomb Raider.

I'm at the extreme upper edge of this target market, which I guess explains why I look for a little more in games than that.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/25/2002 //



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Friday, May 24, 2002x


now that's good news


North Dakota State University Sam Chang is on a project to create enzymes that break down raffinose oligosaccharides. Simply put, Chang's research could result in beans that produce minimal flatulence. Chang's research currently involves ground beans; he said it woudln't work on whole legumes because raffinose oligosaccharides are sugars (undigestible by humans but edible to their intestinal bactieria), and removing the sugars would affect the beans' flavor.

Aside from the obvious social benefits of Chang's research, eliminating the gas would make beans a good food source for babies. Only a complete idiot would feed an infant a diet consisting of beans, despite the fact that they're generally healthy—rich in protein and low in fat—because the gas they produce is painful to babies.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/24/2002 //



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Thursday, May 23, 2002x


would i survive a horror movie?



Would you survive a horror movie? Find out @ She's Crafty

I should hope so...I've seen enough of them.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/23/2002 //



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i find their choice of sizes highly illogical


Trekkies—I'm a Trekkie, you're a Trekkie, and if you're the kind of person who insists on being called a Trekker because you don't want to sound like a geek, you're an even bigger geek than you fear—delight in collecting memorabilia from the show. (I highly recommend the wonderful documentary I just linked to.) Now fans will get to put their wallets on the line in the battle for the ultimate prize: a pile of plastic and plywood also known as the original Captain's Chair. Yes, the same chair seen in the episodes of the original Star Trek (Wired calls it the "Holy Grail") can grace your rumpus room, if you have the scratch.

In 2001, a group of the show's original creators hosted a live auction on eBay to sell off memorabilia including the only remaining production model of the U.S.S. Enterprise and one of the uniform shirts worn by William Shatner as Capt. Kirk.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/23/2002 //



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i'm a lucky guy


I shouldn't go any farther without celebrating a very special anniversary. I've been married to the wonderful Crystal for four years today. To celebrate, we were considering taking in the new Star Wars movie or a Hugh Grant film, and she picked Star Wars. I love her! Thanks, sweetie, for making our life together such a joy. You make me very, very happy, my wife.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/23/2002 //



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krispy kream kicks kiester


Here's one piece of good financial news—my favorite donut shop, Krispy Kreme, just announced profits that exceeded analysts' expectations. The chain of more than 200 doughnut shops in the United States enjoyed increased sales and revenue in the first quarter, with income hitting a tasty $111.1 million. Company executives predicting ongoing growth as the chain rolls out a line of specialty coffees.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/23/2002 //



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rust bucket


Speaking of maritime hazards, Wired recently had an interesting piece about the alarming propensity of oil tankers to break up at sea. It seems that a particularly virulent form of corrosion—"super rust"—attacks the tankers' hulls, making them susceptible to structual failure.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/23/2002 //



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ice ice baby


As long as we're in update mode, another massive iceberg has broken away from Antartica. Just four days earlier, an Australian scientist predicted the two huge icebergs that had already broken from the Ross Ice Shelf were likely to be the last such events for a while.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/23/2002 //



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// deadly idiot update //


Remember the boy convicted of killing a six-year-old girl by imitating pro wrestling moves? His lawyer has now appealed the 14-year-old's life sentence, arguing the teen was treated more harshly than other youths who committed similar offenses, and that a life senetence that begins atr age 12 constitutes cruel and unusual punishment. The conviction and sentence followed the rejection by the boy's trial attorney and mother rejecting a plea bargain that would have resulted in a mere four years' confinement.

If there are more youths that have committed "similar offenses"—mainly breaking the skull of a girl half their age and one-fourth their weight in an egregious confusion of fantasy and reality—we're in worse trouble than I thought.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/23/2002 //



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now that's an eye opener


Does anyone else remember the TV commercials for Coast soap? The tag line was (and is) "the eye-opener" and the commercials would feature zombie-like people getting into their showers all sleepy, and slowly waking up, literally lathering themselves into a joyous frenzy thanks to the stimulating powers of the soap? Although even as a tender youth I was skeptical of a soap's power to dispel the webs of somnolescence, but it seems there's now a product that has the chops: caffeinated soap! Don't eat it; the drug is absorbed through the skin! w00t!

(Via /usr/bin/girl)

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/23/2002 //



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Wednesday, May 22, 2002x


lite brite!


This is cool...a Javascript Lite-Brite game.

My apologies..I forgot who referred this too me. I'll try to backtrack and give props where due.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/22/2002 //



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goodies from r.e.m.


R.E.M. has released a set of remixes from its album Reveal and posted them to its Website. Fans can download the song for free, and best of all it's with the band's blessing.

I think this would be a good time to mention that I once drank a beer with Pete Buck while interviewing him for my college paper. I saw R.E.M twice, on the Reconstruction tour in Lexington and in Louisville on the Pageantry tour (and was front row center for that one! w00t!). Joe Hans, Barbie Gatton and I snuck backstage after the show in Lexington and got autographs from Buck, Mills and Berry. Back then, the band would come out after the show and talk to any fans who cared to stick around for an hour or so.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/22/2002 //



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Tuesday, May 21, 2002x


simple pleasures


I love it when I sign out of Blogger and see Planet Swank on its list of ten recently updated blogs.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/21/2002 //



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i get carried away and am called on it


Faithful readers (both of you) will recall yesterday's post on Bush's assurance to Miami's Cuban-American community that the trade embargo against Cuba will remain until Castro transforms his regime until a democracy. Dodd of Ipse Dixit emailed me to take exception with my comments:

<< Of course, the fact that Castro has been around for us to embargo for 40 years perfectly illustrates how effective this policy has been. >>

Or one might say that, since the USSR propped up the Cuban economy for 30 of those years, now would be the worst time to lift the embargo - since it can finally have the intended effect. Personally, I think we probably should lift it - free trade and tourism would undermine it much faster than the embargo, but suggesting that it is maintained exclusively at the whim of one minority community is reductionist in the extreme - and fails to account for the popularity of the measure in numerous Democratic Administrations (seems to me that the Administration most concerned about Cuba was JFK's).


Thinking about it, I realized that blaming the embargo solely on Cuban-Americans is going too far. Further analysis, however, will have to wait until I can access a computer that can funnel a larger post.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/21/2002 //



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my type of thing


Graphic designer Mark Simonson has this amusing analysis of typefaces used in recent movies. He points out several occasions in which a studio, striving to create a period feel, uses a font that didn't exist until decades after the movie was set. As a movie buff who's worked in various aspects of publishing, I enjoyed the essay.

(Via a hyperlink path originating with SixDifferentWays)

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/21/2002 //



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word on star wars ep 2


My friends Hardin and Sparky emailed me over the weekend to give their impressions of the new Star Wars movie, Attack of the Clones. Since I haven't seen it yet, I thought I'd share what they had to say.

Sparky had sent around an email confessing his anxiety on the eve of his first screening. Essentially, he said his hopes were high yet he was fearful of being disappointed.

Hardin reassured him in reply:

I saw it last night and rather liked it--not up to the standards of the original or Empire, but I think better than Return and way better than the seriously flawed episode 1. I still can't quite figure out the whole Fett fetish, though.

Basically, I think you'll be pleased with Clones because, in the context of a series of movies with a known ending, it still has some pretty solid surprises and heads in a somewhat different direction than you might expect.


So did Sparky like it? Let's see:

It's good. Very good. Far from perfect, and not as good as the first two films, but better than the last 2.


The usual Lucas deficiencies are present: Sometimes awkward dialogue, mediocre to poor acting (Christopher Lee and Frank Oz provide the film's best performances) and the blatant swiping of scenes from other films (THE SEARCHERS again, this time).


However, this time Lucas drowns out those flaws in a flood of eye-catching, edge-of-your-seat action sequences that dominate the final two-thirds of the film...In a bold choice, Lucas allows Anakin to be portrayed as an arrogant
jerk most of the time -- troubled and somewhat sympathetic, but not warm or wholly likeable; clearly, Anakin is on his way to becoming Darth Vader. (If only Lucas had cast an actor in that key role, instead of Christensen.)


Also, Lucas does a masterful job of putting to good use the wealth of characters introduced in the previous film, as well as new ones we meet here. Mace Windu and Yoda are especially prominent...There's a lot less comedy in this
film than in the last 2, and most of what is in the film is actually funny (thanks to our old pal C3PO). And, as you'd expect, the f/x are staggeringly good.


Episode II is also loaded with little tidbids for geek boys like me...Let's just say that if you're a big fan, there's tons of stuff in here for you.



posted by Gregory Harris on 5/21/2002 //



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hope lingers for internet radio


The US Copyright Office has rejected a royalty rate system that Internet radio broadcasters maintained would cripple independent netcasting. Register of Copyrights Marybeth Peters and Librarian of Congress James H. Billington rejected the proposed royalty, but did not indicate whether the replacement would be higher or lower. Both Webcasters and the recording industry, which have been unable to agree on a royalty system, saw the decision as a potential victory.

w00t!

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/21/2002 //



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Monday, May 20, 2002x


a moment of silence


Walter Lord, author of A Night to Remember, the classic account of the Titanic sinking, died in his Manhattan home. He was 84.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/20/2002 //



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call my agent


lara croft
Tomb Raider's Lara Croft is the subject of a series of video games and a successful feature film, with a sequel in the works. Now she's the first video game character to be represented by a Hollywood talent agency. Creative Artists Agency has announced it's signed the buxome video game character as part of its talent roster. (CAA already represents Microsoft's Xbox, but that's a console, not a character.) The agency plans to use Croft's high profile to launch product tie-ins and a TV series.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/20/2002 //



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whoa, back up a bit


Well, it looks like Napster isn't kaput after all. German music giant Bertelsmann has acquired the file-trading system (at a bargain-basement price: US$8 million, as opposed to the US$16 million Napster's board of directors rejected, prompting the company's apparent crisis), and creator Shawn Fanning and CEO Konrad Hilbers are to remain with the company.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/20/2002 //



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that sinking feeling


Key Largo officials have arranged a deal with a salvage company to raise a sunken ship so it can be towed elsewhere and sunk again.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/20/2002 //



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bush vows to maintain cuba embargo


Playing to the rabidly anti-Castro Cuban expatriate comminity in Floida, whose support helped clinch his razor-thin victory, President Bush has pledged to maintain the 40-year-old embargo against Castro's regime. Of course, the fact that Castro has been around for us to embargo for 40 years perfectly illustrates how effective this policy has been. I can just see the headlines in 2042: "US vows to uphold sanctions against Iraq; insists Hussein must comply with UN resolutions."

Actually, I think Hussein will be long gone by then (but not thanks to any imminent US military action). Still, it's clear that the Cuban sanctions simply don't work and are maintained solely to placate a tiny but aggressively vocal minority. I'd ask why we're letting such a small interest group dictate US foreign policy, but for the answer we have just to look back to the last presidential election.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/20/2002 //



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it was bound to happen


Well, no post for Saturday...by the time I got back from seeing Spider-Man, the date stamp had rolled over.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/20/2002 //



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in space no one throws water balloons


In an experiment to test how space workers could "rapidly deploy large liquid drops by rupturing an enclosing membrane," NASA scientists have posted what happens when they popped a water balloon in microgravity environment.

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/20/2002 //



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Sunday, May 19, 2002x


very tricky


Even though I don't smoke, I own a Zippo lighter (actually two now, since I got a second, engraved one when I ushered for my friends Mark and Vanessa's wedding). I've never been able to do anything fancy with it (heck, I never used it much at all, and I don't even carry one much these days; my cell phone rides in that pocket instead). But thanks to this site, I might break the old thing out and learn some fly moves. It even has 3d-rendered Zippo wallpaper!

(Via /usr/bin/girl)

posted by Gregory Harris on 5/19/2002 //



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